Being Grateful. The Ultimate Social Media Strategy

My Social Media Strategy: the Culture of Gratefulness

What would you say if I told you I had the perfect social media strategy that will:

  • Grab attention
  • Build followers
  • Build community
  • Make you unique
  • never hurt your reputation, only enhance it.

I’ve decided I have one of those. ;)

Is It Karma?

You could call it “Karma”. You could call it “giving back”. You could call it being “a nice person”.

I call it, “a vital part of my social media strategy”. Because it is. Seriously.

Here in the arts community, I hear the words “giving back” and “supporting the community” quite often. I’d say it’s something we believe in as a community, perhaps more so than many other industries. I’d like to illustrate how this translates into a social media strategy.

As individuals, sometimes we get wrapped up in the thought that giving back somehow involves large amounts of money or time. That’s scary to us and we don’t do it most of the time. The reality is, it’s really easy to give back in little ways every day, and it will never ever hurt your business or social media reputation. It can only make it so much more amazing.

So, I suppose I take back what I said earlier. It’s so much more than a strategy. It’s a culture.

The Culture of Gratefulness

Thankfulness is the feeling, the realization that someone has done something for us. Gratefulness is the outward expression of our thankfulness. This is such an important distinction, because thankfulness is a one-sided activity. Gratefulness involves letting the other person know what we are thinking and feeling. Often, a two little words are sufficient.

Thank. You.

So simple. :)

My Culture of Gratefulness translates into a social media strategy very easily. I see that someone has taken time out of their day to do something for me, I take the time to acknowledge it and express my thankfulness.

I make a point of trying to reply to every comment because every single comment represent someone’s time and thought life. I have decided to say thank you for re-tweets and shares as often as I can manage because someone took the time to share. I read every email, and reply to as many as I possibly can because someone took the time to write me.

For each and every one of these things, I am truly thankful, and it is the least I can do to be grateful.

Right now, the bar is set so low. It’s sad really.  So many people and businesses are so wrapped up in their auto posting and content pushing they forget to be a real human being with adequate social graces. The truth is, being nice, grateful, and attentive can separate you from the pack. It’s not some complicated algorithm. It’s not some clever deviousness. It’s just being real and personable.

Some special things start happening when we take the time to be grateful:

  • Because it is so rare and unexpected, it grabs people’s attention
  • On twitter, it turns a casual RT or share into a loyal follower
  • On LinkedIn (in the groups), it starts turning a simple share into a community of people who read and comment on what you post, because they know they are listened to and appreciated
  • ^^Same with Facebook
  • People love to feel like they are being listened to, it really makes their day
  • Because you are filling a psychological need to be appreciated, it builds strong and loyal relationships with people who you’ve never met.

The simple act of being grateful:

  • Grabs attention
  • Builds followers
  • Builds community
  • Makes you unique.

I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a pretty darn good social media marketing strategy to me.

To wrap this up, here are some simple ideas of how you can implement your own culture of gratefulness in your social media strategy:

  • Bloggers love comments. It makes us feel special and appreciated for the work we put in. So comment on your favorite blogs, and express your thankfulness for their time and thought-life.
  • Say thank you by sharing the posts you enjoy reading. It is another way to make your favorite bloggers feel special.
  • Most people are thrilled by a reply back on twitter. Take the time to say thank you for re-tweets, mentions and new followers. It only takes a couple of seconds, and it makes people’s day half the time. It still makes mine. :)
  • If you came to a blogpost through a social network, take the time to go back to that person who shared it and thank them, or give your opinion on the content.
  • Take the time to give a good review to a product or service that really helped, inspired, or did an excellent job for you.
  • If you have a blog, take the time to reply back to your comments. When you read them, reply back right then, if you possibly can.

For me, the Culture of Gratefulness is a social media strategy. I’ve thought it through and made the decision to be that person who lives it out in real life and social media. I’ve made the decision to go above and beyond what’s expected. I know what I’m doing and why.

What about you?

  • Do you take the time to express your thankfulness, or do you just keep it to yourself?
  • What are your favorite ways to be grateful within the business or social media world?
photo credit: theloushe via photopin cc

Rachel Ann Poling Rachel Ann Poling

Hi! Cross pollinate an opera singer, an entreprenuer, a social media nut, and Tiger = you got me. =D
I started singing when I was 2.
I started college when I was 16.
I graduated with a BA in music when I was 19.
Started my social media consulting business that same year.

Twitter: Rachelannpoling

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